Richfield, UT – First Baptist Church, Centerfield, Utah held an ordination service for Emery Polelonema, a long-time member of Sevier Valley Baptist Church (formerly First Baptist Church Richfield), long-time pulpit supply for churches in Central Utah. For the past two years, Emery has served as pastor at First Baptist Church, Centerfield after former pastor, Nathan Simmons, passed away from cancer. The service took place in Richfield on January 23, 2022.
An ordination council was organized with area pastors and the Executive Director of Utah-Idaho Southern Baptist Convention. Perry Causey, current interim pastor of Sevier Valley Baptist Church, Don Carter, former pastor and interim pastor, First Baptist Church, Mt Pleasant, current Pastor Addam Swapp, Horseshoe Mountain Christian Fellowship (formerly First Baptist Church, Mt Pleasant), and Rob Lee, Utah-Idaho Southern Baptist Convention. The council questioned the candidate under Don Carter’s leadership and Rob serving as the clerk for council. Emery shared his testimony of receiving Christ as Lord and Savior at First Baptist Church, Richfield in 1983.
Rob shared that having known Emery for nearly thirty years and having sat in Bible studies and sermons preached by candidate that this was an enjoyable time to recognize God’s call on Emery’s life. Emery has also served two full terms on the Executive Board for the Utah-Idaho Southern Baptist Convention. Emery is from the Hopi tribe and Lillie, his wife, is Navajo. He is also retired from serving Six County Association of Governments (SCAOG) and as a consultant for SAE Engineering in Richfield.
Perry Causey preached the charge to Emery and Lillie, family living locally and online, guests, and to those watching online live from Italy, Arizona, and Idaho. Twenty-two were in person and another twenty-five online for the service. Long time church member Paula was so touched seeing so many in attendance for the service. Afterwards the church provided a fellowship meal as they celebrated this day with Emery and his family.
Pastor Emery Polelonema
Pastor Perry Causey presents charge to the candidate
Friends and family of Emery and Lillie were in attendance. Service recorded on Zoom where many more participated.
Thank you, Sevier Valley Baptist Church, for hosting this Ordination Celebration
Republished from TVSBA Newsletter: The Focus (November-December 2021)
MERIDIAN, ID- Some think being a part of the SBC is like selecting a political party of which to be a part. The thinking being, if they change course I will leave them.
While that may be fine for politics, for Kingdom purposes, we have a much higher standard.
This writer has never been under the misguided notion that Southern Baptists are perfect. And, boy we aren’t. I am Southern Baptist because of calling. Just as I have been called to the ministry, I am called to be a Southern Baptist. The basis of that call is the evangelistic and missions priorities of the SBC. These are in accord with the Great Commission and the Great Commandment. These priorities have not changed.
When Israel came to the edge of the promised land, they chose heresy and cowardice over the revealed will of God. Joshua, Caleb, etc. didn’t leave because of this chosen heresy. They went with them through four decades of wilderness journey preparing the new generations for entering the promised land with a new heart that God would give them the promised land as He had promised.
Years ago I was in Virginia when a young leader spoke with me about their idea of forming another Virginia State Convention. I spoke to him of Israel’s failure to take the promised land. He said that I had a strong allegory. I informed him it wasn’t an allegory, rather, a strong application.
My reasons for being a Southern Baptist have not changed. The priorities which are the basis of my call to be a Southern Baptist have not changed. Will I reject God’s call on my life and ministry be-cause of the errors of some vocal detractors of the main call? May it never be. With Ronnie Floyd resigning as President of the SBC Executive Committee, some will say he has left Southern Baptists. He has not. He left the Executive Committee.
Keep your eye on the goal. The evangelistic and missional priorities have not changed. Until they do, God has called me to be a Southern Baptist. My job now, again, is preparing new generations for a new promised land victory in faithful obedience. Be sure you don’t jump ship in rejection of God’s promised land call and command. Wilderness journeys are not fun. However, they are certain because many among us will bail out on the promised land assignment because of someone else’s heresy. Therefore, prepare your heart and ministry to prepare the coming generations for promised land victories. And, keep living His call personally and corporately.
Jerry Martin An old Southern Baptist by God’s call and my choice of obedience to His call. Jerry recently retired as our Sharing Christ Missionary for UISBC yet still coordinates our Prayer Network. You can contact him at: email@example.com
NASHVILLE (BP) – SBC Executive Committee president Ronnie Floyd announced Wednesday (Oct. 6) that giving through the National Cooperative Program Budget Allocation topped $192.2 million for the 2020-21 fiscal year. In doing so, budget estimates for the year were exceeded by nearly $5.4 million.
“What a tremendous testimony of God’s grace given to us and God’s people extending generosity together to reach the world for Jesus Christ,” Floyd said. “This is the power and influence of what happens when we believe in the vision, work together, and partner together for the advancement of the Gospel of Jesus Christ to the world.
“As our Southern Baptist churches across the nation have been navigating and leading through a global pandemic for the past 18 months, we can testify that God is using them to keep on sending new missionaries on the field, by keeping our present missionary force on the field, by launching new church planters across our nation, by keeping those on the field who are planting new churches, and at the same time, by preparing the called through our seminaries. This work is being accomplished because of your church’s giving through the Cooperative Program.”
The total amount given through the national Cooperative Program Allocation Budget in September 2021 totaled $13,355,428.46, which was $1,467,881.53 (9.90 percent) less than the $14,823,309.99 received in September 2020 and $2,217,488.21 (14.24 percent) less than the monthly budgeted amount of $15,572,916.67.
For the 2020-21 fiscal year, gifts received by the EC for distribution through the CP Allocation Budget total $192,271,436.28. This is $629,414.90 or 0.33 percent less than last year’s budget contribution of $192,900,851.18 and ahead of the $186,875,000.04 budgeted projection to support Southern Baptist ministries globally and across North America by $5,396,436.24 or 2.89 percent.
“I am overwhelmed with gratitude for the sacrificial giving of Southern Baptists,” SBC President Ed Litton said. “Every dollar that is given by these saints is intended to advance the Gospel and accomplish the Great Commission. I am especially grateful to God for their generous giving through the Cooperative Program during a season of economic uncertainty due to the many challenges brought on by the pandemic. May God use all of these funds to equip his church to reach the world for Christ.”
Willie McLaurin, SBC EC vice president for Great Commission relations and mobilization, expressed his gratitude for the “steadfast and sacrificial giving of churches through the Cooperative program.” He added that “the local and global reach of every gift is a testimony to the strong cooperative spirit of every church. The churches of the SBC have demonstrated obedient resolved and have trusted God with their resources.”
Total Cooperative Program giving includes all monies given by churches through state conventions to be used for Great Commission ministry and missions within the respective states, across North America and around the world. Begun in 1925, the Cooperative Program is the financial fuel to fund the SBC mission and vision of reaching every person for Jesus Christ in every town, every city, every state, and every nation. Monies are distributed according to the 2020-2021 Cooperative Program Allocation Budget.
Designated gifts received in September amounted to $3,466,582.33. This total was $1,244,699.12, or 26.42 percent, less than gifts of $4,711,281.45 received last September. Also, this year’s designated gifts for the fiscal year amount to $192,351,656.08, which is $18,132,149.23, or 10.41 percent, more than the $174,219,506.85 given through same period in the previous fiscal year.
Designated totals include both Lottie Moon Christmas Offering gifts to the International Mission Board and Annie Armstrong Easter Offering gifts to the North American Mission Board. NAMB announced Monday (Oct. 4) a fiscal year total of $66.5 million for AAEO – the largest in history. IMB is expected to announce the LMCO total in the coming days.
About the Author:
Jonathan is vice president for communications at the SBC Executive Committee.